From an Economic Perspective – Ian Irvine | rights4vapers


Concentration of Nicotine in Vaping Products Regulations 

I am a professor in the Department of Economics, Concordia University, Montreal. I am grateful to several people in writing this submission.

In particular, my son Neal, a vaper and former smoker, has provided me with invaluable assistance in understanding the vaping market and in writing this report. Disclosure: I have worked as a consultant to the federal government of Canada on alcohol and tobacco and to legal professionals in the private sector who specialize in nicotine. This paper and research have received no funding. Comments welcome to


In December 2019 Health Canada (HC) produced new regulations (henceforth the Regulation) governing the concentration of nicotine in vaping products in Canada. It decided upon a maximum of 20 milligrams per milliliter (mg/ml).

These regulations form one pallier of a multi-pronged assault on the vaping market. The federal government will formally announce restrictions on the availability of flavors in the spring of 2021. Federal/provincial excise and sales taxes are in progress, and further regulations have been promised for 2022.

HC is concerned that concentrations above this level have been both an inducement for teenagers to begin vaping and a source of continued dependence. The Regulation states that “lowering the maximum concentration of nicotine in vaping products is expected to reduce the appeal of these products to youth.”

The central policy challenge in the regulation of vaping is to strike a balance between, on the one hand, inducing smokers who would otherwise not quit smoking to transition to reduced-harm products (RHP) such as electronic cigarettes, and on the other to disincentivize youth from initiating the use of nicotine – a product that induces a high degree of dependence.

Read full article here.

Ian Irvine – Submission – March 1, 2021.

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